The outpouring of open, virulent racism that many feared would arise during the campaign -- and in the secrecy of the voting booth -- never really manifested itself. But I think that it will emerge much more strongly now, in the aftermath, as part of a carefully cultivated dolchstosslegende even now being perpetrated by the rightwing media machine. Fox News and Karl Rove are already pushing stories about "Black Panthers" intimidating voters and widespread vote fraud among the worthless darkies whose votes have propelled Obama to victory. (These would be the same worthless darkies whom the rightwingers also blame for the global economic catastrophe.) There will be much, much more of this in the days and weeks to come.
It will not hurt Obama, of course; he will have the power he has sought, and the upsurge of ugly, unrepentant racism on the Right will only make his "progressive" allies far less willing to criticize his actions -- especially those mysterious "highly unpopular policies" that Joe Biden has promised Obama will adopt in the face of a guaranteed foreign policy crisis sometime next year. (Not to mention the promised escalation of the quagmire in Afghanistan.) But ordinary African-Americans will bear the painful brunt of this pouring of old hatreds into new wineskins. As always, black people will be blamed for all the nation's ills by the overclass that actually controls the machinery of power, and has been grinding its bootheel on the neck of black Americans for centuries.
-Chris Floyd, Empire Burlesque
Beware that Obama, even if he had any liberal inclinations, is going to be under strict surveillance and pressure to 'govern from the centre', because practically every commentator on the box as well as the Democratic Leadership Council is demanding that Obama do just that and resist pressure from his constituents.
the Democrats control all three branches of government, with expanded majorities in the Congress and Senate. They have moved deep into Republican territory...When Obama 'reaches out' to Republicans and starts blustering about bipartisanship, and when he appoints someone like Robert Gates as his secretary of defense, there will be no excuse. If he fails to carry out even his most limited reforms, he has no scope for blaming the Right. If he doesn't close Guantanamo and restore habeus corpus, he has no one else to blame.
All I'm saying is, to those hundreds of thousands of people marching and dancing in the streets, be prepared to be back on the streets soon. The system is designed to lock you out as quickly and quietly as possible.
-Richard Seymour, Lenin's Tomb
Maybe this is why it's okay that I took such a severe break from political and policy organizing since May.
It's just about time to begin.
For fantastic persuasive writing about the importance of community organizing and about good examples of community organizing done well, please see posts written throughout the years at Brownfemipower's blog.
(I don't know where to start. I don't have friends in terribly lousy economic situations in real life, and I don't have leftist friends in real life. I can't really figure out how to get them excited about hustling to dismantle the prison-industrial complex.)
(For online life, I did, by the way, just purchase a good domain name that I'd love to give to the cause of influencing the new White House's policy stances. Contact influenceobama -at- gmail -dot- com if you think it sounds like a good idea. Honestly, I have no idea how to get a comunity web site going. I just bought the domain name to hold onto!)